‘Silent Watch’ calls attention to veteran suicides

SIDNEY — A flag-draped coffin will be the focal piece for a Sept. 22 event planned to bring awareness to Shelby County residents about veterans’ suicides and prevention.

Sponsored by the Shelby County Veteran Service Commission and supported by the American Legion and VFW posts of Shelby County as well as the DAV Chapter 48, the event will go from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sept. 22. The Silent Watch will be located on the southwest corner of courtsquare.

Volunteers are invited to “Stand the Watch” consisting of about 20 minutes next to the coffin. There will be chairs available for anyone that would like to participate but may not be able to stand for a prolonged period of time.

“We are asking community members to volunteer -you do not have to be veterans nor active member of the military. Those who have served in the military are not required to wear a uniform for the event,” said Chris North, Shelby County Veteran Service Commission executive director,

On average approximately 20 veterans die of suicide every day according to statistics from the Department of Veterans Affairs.

The purpose of the event is to bring awareness to veterans and those that care for them that help is available. There will be information available for anyone interested.

Anyone interested in standing watch at the even should contact the Shelby County Veteran Service Office, 937-498-7282, and indicate a time and range they would be available.